Saturday, March 31, 2007
Well, I have heard a lot of people rave about those who can communicate with animals. I have had several recommendations, and made an appointment with Dawn.
I made very general statements about my cats. She asked for names, age, and coloring. I said I wanted to check in with everyone. I didn't give specific questions till after her first "general impression"
I use quotes for lack of better terminology on my part. Yes, I am/was skeptical. I know cats live in the moment, and don't really dig deep into their past and carry these things around, so I was pretty certain they wouldn't complain that one time I yelled too loud etc.
She said Em thought she was a good cat, and very patient with the other kitties. She said that she sleeps a lot and gets tired easily. That her mouth hurts, and she has been getting sick to her stomach. Em has a good opinion of herself. I asked why she doesn't use the litter box, and the answer was that she didn't like climbing in and didn't like standing in it. Em thinks she is a clean cat. I asked specifically about her health, and beyond that she's tired and her mouth hurts, she didn't complain. I asked about if I should fight aggressively, or if I should let her go when her health declines, and Em was concerned about the quality of life. If she can continue on with the quality of life, then she wants to stay around.
Ollie says everyone is happy here. He's healthy but does have occasional discomfort when urinating. Not at the moment, but when it does happen it is in his urethra and penis. He also mentioned he likes his food - qualified to the dry food which I feed as treats.
Jack said he loves me a lot. He immediately asked if he could go outside because he likes the birds - even though he said he knew the answer was going to be no. Then he asked if I would play with him more alone. (I have noticed that previously - if I try to play with him, others join in and he gives up and leaves) She commented he was very loving. I asked about his health due to the fact he had blocked before - and Jack said it was because he was stressed at the time. I am going to have to read back in this blog and find out what was going on at the time to see if I can figure out what might have been stressing him.
Muffin. Immediately said she's jealous of Tweedle. Muff thinks Twee is "super cute, innocent and joyful" Likes Twee in general, but not of the attention she gets from me. Muff said she'd like extra love and complements and also would like to play with toys with me alone. Also, she would like more treats.
Eli... She laughed when she talked to Eli. Eli didn't know what to say and asked for specific questions. I asked about his health, and he said he was fine. I asked about how he feels about my cleaning his ears and eyes. He said it hurt, but was appreciative, that it helps him a lot and that I was very careful when I did it. - we then moved on to Tweedle. While we were talking about Twee... Eli came in the room and pawed at the phone cord, so I asked to check in with him to see if there was something else and was told he thought all of this was very "strange"
Tweedle. She said Twee talks as if she is 9 months old. She knows she is the baby. She loves other cats and wants to cuddle with them more. She feels she has to force other kitties to spend time with her.
and that was pretty much it. They are very happy and content. Dawn commented that she thought what we had was unique for a six cat household.. that there usually are more issues.
I was a little surprised that Ollie wasn't more grumpy about things - but thinking about it, he has been happier lately.. I still call him my grumpy ol' man, but maybe I need to reconsider that. I'm a little surprised that no one complained about the restrictions I put on them.. like getting in Em's room. The jealousy I knew about and was amused that it was the first thing Muff said. I was amazed that she said that Twee talks like she's 9 months. I've always said that Twee is my "down syndrome" kitty. Sweet as pie, but developmentally behind.
Now for the Em update.
Monday she went to the vet. Tuesday wasn't a good day. She was tired and listless. Wednesday she was a little more alert, and her nose wasn't as bad - till I saw where she slept all day, as it was covered in what ever is draining out of her nose. Thursday her nose was bad again, but she was downright perky.. Friday the same. Today after the reading I took her outside. She's been making motions that she really wanted to, so today I let her. She walked around the house, marking every corner. She went and investigated the neighbor's little trees that line our property line. When she used to go outside, she used to just go out and sit under the bushes, but there are no bushes here, so it looked like she was checking out the trees to see if she could hide under them. She tried to get to the brush at the edge of our property, but I wouldn't let her because there would be no catching her in there. She continued to walk around the house and climbed up the rocks on one corner. I didn't think she could make it as she's old etc, but she jumped right up there. She found several things in the ground very interesting to smell and spent some time sniffing it. She then walked back up on the porch, and with a little encouragement, she went into the house. She really seemed perky and as if she was having a lot of fun, so I'll probably do that tomorrow. Might even try putting a harness on Jack and see if he wants to go too. I don't mind letting Em go, because she can't or won't really run, but I couldn't trust that I would be able to catch Jack if something freaked him out and he decided to bolt.
Summery - Em is pretty much the same, enjoying life, food and a good cuddle. If she's dying, she isn't doing it anytime soon. See. I absolutely should not put the cart before the horse, but it is so hard. It took until Thursday till I could drive in the car and not be close to tears about losing her, no matter how many times I told myself it wasn't happening yet. The test results aren't in yet, so we still have a few more hurdles to get through.
Thursday, March 29, 2007
I was going through my picts of Em, and found this one
Notice how she's squinting her eye. That is the same eye she has been squinting lately, same side of her head that she's protective of her ear and the nostril that is running.
Makes me wonder if this isn't something that has been going on since Christmas time - although if truth be told back then I didn't wonder if there wasn't something else going on with her..
Lots of drainage this morning, but she was looking for attention, so that's a good thing.
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
her BGs are running just under 300.. she's hungry.. and she's sleeping WAY too much. Antibiotics have not made a dent in the discharge.. but she only had two doses as of this morning (when I gave her the third then went off to work)
Fortunately I haven't annoyed her yet with my wanting to be near her.. but I know I could if I'm not careful (yes, i tend to hover)
I'm considering a consult with an animal communicator.. but I don't know what I would ask.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
To the Emmy blog?
Let me just post that I hate the new blogger format. I can't type in HTML without losing my entire post and have to retype it. *arrrgh* The first round was emotionally difficult enough..
So Em didn't have a great night. She was starving, and this morning her BGs were high, and her nose was cemented shut with goop. She hated having me clean it off.. but I think she was glad to have it clear. She was very excited to have breakfast... so much so she was very easy to medicate. She knows that once that is done she gets food. The last couple of days have actually been beyond easy. I'd think she was hiding and not actually swallowing the pills if they weren't so huge.
I am stressing kind of bad. I need to let go of that. Because it is either an infection and the meds will clear her up and I'll have her around for a long time, or it is a brain tumor (I hate typing brain tumor - ranks right up there in my mind with alien abduction because I'm always quick to throw out brain tumor when listing things that COULD go wrong) and I've got a few more months with her and there is NOTHING I can do about it
I forced the talk with the DH about what is going to happen when the time comes. Even if it isn't cancer, she's eventually going to go, and it will be good to have the conversation anyway. I personally think a general cremation is a good idea. I feel bad about not wanting the ashes or a body back afterward. Working at the vet, and spending a lot of time around other pet lovers who bury the body or keep the ashes and find great comfort in that... I feel like I must be lacking something to not want it. I have had two other cats put down before.. Melody a stray with FELV and Kodi the foster we adopted with FIP. I didn't keep either one of them, but I didn't have them around very long. DH commented we didn't have Kodi around long enough to get attached; to which I laughed I get attached after the first day!
But we've had Emerald for 16 yrs..
I remember the first time I saw her. She came through a friend of a friend of a friend,they picked her out and brought her over to me. We played with her on the kitchen table, when she started looking around and trying to get off the table. I thought she might need a litter box, so we took her outside and she promptly went to the flower bed and did her duty :) We took her home, and her first litter box was the cover to the record player we had because our current litter box was too high for her to jump in. She was way too young to be taken away from her mom.. and she tried to nurse on Tigger - our first cat. He never forgave her for that. Peace eventually settled, but they were never close. Also turns out that the people where she was born couldn't tell the difference between boy cats and girl cats.. because when we went to have Em spayed, she was castrated instead.. but we were used to calling her a her, and she acts like a girl, so that is how she remained.
Em never liked other cats. Guess her experience with Tig taught her they weren't nice. So when we got the opportunity to get Ollie, I brought him home and put him in the rabbit cage we own. Em was taught to leave things in cages alone. She wasn't fooled and hissed, but after a bit of convincing, she grudgingly allowed him to live in HER house. Then the fosters came.. by then Em realized that kittens were fun to lick - her favorite past time.. Now she loves all the other kitties.
I must say I'm glad for the other kitties. They provide great distraction.. and if need be, I can get fosters for even more :D
Monday, March 26, 2007
I must not put the cart before the horse.. I MUST NOT PUT THE CART BEFORE THE HORSE..
okay, that said.. I am doing my best not to jump to all the wrong conclusions and make a mess out of myself and my emotions.
Em had a great morning. BG a little on the high side, but nothing out of the current ordinary. She didn't finish all her breakfast, but that's okay too. I purposefully didn't clean her nose last night so the vet could see what's going on, but she cleaned it herself, so it was clear as we went.
she was very quiet on the car ride... such a change from her younger days. This was normal for her now that she's old. She can't be bothered to waste energy complaining like she used to.
I explained the symptoms and said that I thought it was a brain tumor. The vet didn't rule it out..
she was on antibiotics for two weeks ending last Friday - so he decided to culture the stuff in her nose to see if it was just a resistant infection.. that will take about a week.
IF it is a tumor, then she'll steadily get worse, and she'll probably have a few months left. The vet recently had to put his kitty down and she started out with the same symptoms as Em.
Which if you don't remember / don't want to read back are: weight loss - a pound in just a few months, snotty/bloody nose - left nostril only, very hungry (could be thyroid issue not under control), blood sugars all over the place, unsteady on feet on bed when she shakes her head and this morning unsteady on solid floor, and very protective of her left ear.
When the exam was over, she started bleeding out of her right nostril. This scared me. The vet said he didn't do anything that could have caused it - which I knew cause I was right there the whole time. She blew quite a few droplets before it just stopped.
I brought her home, she got anxious on the ride home and wanted out of the carrier, so I let her (I know I know.. I shouldn't have)
So either she's got an infection and she could live a couple more years, or she's got a tumor and she could live a couple more months.
I want to be prepared for the worst, but each time I try to wrap my brain around it, I start crying and mourning her loss.
So for now - till the culture comes back - I am going to live in denial..
when I know more, THEN I'll make plans
See. No cart before the horse..
Sunday, March 25, 2007
Time to make the cat food...
Man I HATE doing that, but I am glad to have it, and glad to know exactly what is in the food I'm feeding my cats and glad to know there isn't anything in there they don't need (blueberries and spinach anyone??)
I have always been extremely squeamish around raw meat. I won't cook with it unless it has been processed within an inch of not being raw meat anymore - chicken breasts only - with no skin, no veins, no obvious signs that it used to be an animal; or beef cut well enough to have no fat and no grizzle - I was so certain I would not be able to get through the actual making of it, but somehow - with the help of latex gloves - so I don't have to actually touch the meat - I get through it.
Huge thanks to my DH who does the clean up as well. *shudder*
Today I tried something new.. I put a can of salmon in it. I didn't realize the canned salmon came with the backbone and what not.. *shudder* and the smell - oh my goodness. Now I hate seafood to begin with.. but that stuff was just FOUL! (hubby says it wasn't bad - just strong) Hope the cats like it. They like seafood.
They have food for four more weeks.
I'm considering buying a small freezer and making double what I do now. It takes about two hours at this point, with an hour of that is prep of setup and clean up. If I doubled it, it would probably only take three hours.. and it would be so worth it to not have to grind as often.. and to get the food out of my current freezer so we could buy more frozen food :)
Em is not doing well. I was very scared Friday night when I got home from work because she was bordering on lethargic. Hard to tell with Em in general because she's so sedentary, to begin with, but she wasn't looking at us, was just hanging her head and looking sad. Her nose is horrid.. poor thing. I stopped the antibiotics that night as they aren't doing anything. I fear a tumor of some sort - either in her brain or in her sinuses.. I hope I am wrong!! Saturday morning she was back to her 'perky' self, so I didn't rush her to the vet - since I knew they were booked anyway. We have an appointment tomorrow at 9:30 Hopefully all will be well - or at least treatable.
I also fear she's a little dehydrated. *sigh* Poor old girl. She HATES it when I try to clean off her nose. I'm sure she likes to have it clean. I know I hated it when someone else cleaned off my nose when I was a sick kid.
I guess tomorrow we'll know something more - hopefully.
Thursday, March 22, 2007
Em is fine. She needs to put on weight, and I wish she'd feel full, but there was no more blood (well ok there was blood on her nose) and she was fine (if you don't count the bloody snotty nose)
Muffin's toe looked great this afternoon. it's weird, it has the top structure - like the sides were ripped away. Jack's looks very similar. I swear those two like to be 'trouble twins' If I didn't know better, I would say they were siblings. Everything one of them does, so does the other. I peeked at Jack's toe last night. Was able to pull off more fur to get a better look. looks a tad bit swollen.. or maybe just red.. he seemed uncomfortable with my picking too much fur out of it, so when I got a good look at it, I just put some more peroxide on it and he went on his way. he wasn't clenching it anymore either.. So I'm calling it good.
A while back, I found a kitty on the side of the road near a house that I know not to have cats. I picked him up, brought him home, and went in search of his owner. I found her quite a ways away from where I found him. He wasn't hurt.. just on the side of a busy road and aways from home. Well, it looks like he likes it at my house. I've seen kitty footprints outside my house over the winter, and this morning he was on the porch looking in the window. Now this cat was in my car and was driven to the house, then went into his owners car and was driven away.. Got to love the mystery of cats. I wouldn't mind his visits if it wasn't a fairly busy and winding road he was crossing. I fear for his safety. Not much I can do.. if the owners won't keep him in..
Wednesday, March 21, 2007
I am very fortunate that I refuse to feed foods with wheat gluten, or anything manufactured by Iams, Euk, and SD... My cats are currently safe from the melamine recall. I wonder how the shelter is doing relying on donated cans.. since a lot of the brands recalled were store brands.. I emailed and asked, but I haven't heard back.
However, my cats really do enjoy freaking me out. I swear it is their hobby. Emerald had a little blood in her mouth this morning. My subconcious is sitting here planning on how to mourn for her. I so need to stop that cause she is quite a ways away from that. Not nearly as far as I would like, but nothing I think I have to worry about. I'm not happy that she hasn't gotten back over 11 lbs, and she seems to be hungry all the time again, so I called the vet for an appointment. Low and behold they are so busy there isn't room on Saturday!! So we have one for Monday morning.
And on the freaking me out hobby, Muffin had a ripped rear toenail this morning. No idea when she did it. It was all dried up and in pretty good shape - considering. So I just pulled off the debris, and sent her on her way. I then grabbed Jack for his semi daily combing, and found one of his toes was so bad that I couldn't get him to unclench his foot. usually when I play with his back feet, he spreads his toes wide, but he kept it clenched. I couldn't see much of anything, so I got some peroxide and soaked it. I tried to separate out the fur, no go. I tried cutting some of it off.. no go. It doesn't seem to hurt him... as he's not showing any pain as I was proding it, and rubbing his foot. I couldn't help but wonder if he actually broke his toe seeing how tight he was keeping it clenched. I finally let him go, after I got a ton of peroxide on it.. he started licking it at that point, so I'll check it tonight when I get home and see if it looks ok. it wasn't swollen, it didn't hurt him, it was if it just wasn't there
Thursday, March 15, 2007
I love this cat, I really do. I feel so bad for her because she doesn't have opposable thumbs, so she can't feed herself, and she doesn't have the will to fight off Muffin, so when food is available, Muff usually steals it.*
So she sits there, does that silent meow, looks at me so hopefully.. no guile, no guilt trips, just pure hope that food will follow. I don't know why she tends to think food won't follow, as I give in to her every single time..
She's back down to 10lbs 10 oz. I ALMOST had her back over 11lbs.. *sigh* the incredible shrinking cat.
She has started with a snotty nose. shortly after the bloody nose, she was sneezing from time to time. Last week she started blowing snot bubbles. No other symptoms (that were new anyway) so I let it go for a few days. Then it started caking over her nostril. Called the vet.. put her on antibiotics.. no changes. She has balance problems when she shakes her head, she usually falls over if she's on the bed - which is fortunate because I don't think my heart could stand to watch her fall over on the floor. her BGs are running high.. she's constantly hungry... she's got a snotty nose... she has balance issues.. yes, I think something is wrong. I so should get her into the vet.. maybe Saturday.. I'll wait one more day for this nose thing to clear up..
*speaking of Muffin. I have lamented before how freakin sneaky she is at getting into Em's room (where the 'stinky goodness' is) well for a while there all I had to do was stomp on the floor and she'd go running. The other day she didn't. I had to open the door. I made mean noises, but didn't chase after her - I probably should have, because last night I made stompy noises, no running cat. I opened the door, no running cat. I thought for a second that I was wrong and Em was in her room all by herself but then the door finished opening and Muff was trying to hide behind it Sneaky wench. I scolded her and I didn't see her again till morning when she walked up to me as if to say "Hi mom, did you have a good night?" *rolls eyes*
Thursday, March 8, 2007
I'm at home today. Got some family issues going on.. so after I exercised, I decided it was time to do 'day of beauty' for the cats. I had been out of toothpaste, and the new one came in last night. Half of the cats have great teeth, the other half.. BAD!!
Anyway.. Jack has always had extremely loose anal glands. They are two sacks near the anus that secrete the most foul smelling stuff - but apparently is uber good smelling to other cats, cause every time his lets go, there is at least one cat ready to clean it up for him.
It's usually only a couple of drops, not a big deal.
Well, today I bugged him so badly that it shot out of him.. literally. landed on my leg. EWWWW. and yes.. it stinks. Seemed a little thicker than I'm used to for him (usually it's a gel to toothpaste consistency - but Jack's has always been like milk) so it was probably a good thing he got 'cleaned out'. Don't want those things backing up. It's not comfortable. Em has had an issue a couple of times.
Speaking of Em. *sigh* she has snot and blood coming out of one nostril. her BGs are constantly high. I hope it is just the insulin is old.. it is just about done and we have another newer vial.. but I'm sure even that is expired. I don't want to switch because L has been working well for her.. but if it isn't.... then I guess we'll have to.
I fear this newest development with the nose after her nosebleed, and the odd sense that I get when I look at her face that she's no longer symmetrical.
I suppose I should just get over the fear, and get her to the Dr. but I also fear that I'll go and not need to.. I hate wasting money.
Suppose it isn't a waste if it gives me peace of mind. Maybe tomorrow.. Maybe next week. *shrug*
Thursday, March 1, 2007
I need to be more vigilant when making sure Em is in her room alone. All too often I hear noises that imply she's got visitors who are eating her food and using her facilities, and I ignore it. I think that gives the kitties the idea that it's okay to be in there sometimes..
So now I get my lazy butt out of bed, or off the computer whenever I suspect.. Last night it was 1 am. I made stomping noises as I walked out of the bedroom, and before I could even get to the hall, Muffin had bolted from the room and was running for the living room.
She KNOWS I don't want to catch her in there. I don't think she's quite figured out I don't want her in there at all.
Poor Em won't get past 11 lbs. Well, she did once, right after she ate a large dinner. She's stuck at 10 lbs 14 oz.
Bri is molting kinda badly. She looks horrible. She started pretty early this year, as apparently a lot of rabbits did (according to my newsgroup) I so need to clean up her room so I feel comfortable letting her out again. All the baseboards and part of the closet casings are chewed up. Since they have to be replaced anyway.. I should just let her have at it. *sigh* Well the basement should be finished soon, and I'm hoping to have a place for her down there.. something like Tobin's set up, which was a big wooden pen... would give her more room to run around, would let the kitties visit her when they wanted to, and would make it easier for me to keep the area clean. DH isn't thrilled with the idea.. but I'm hoping. We'll see what happens once we get everything set up. Besides, with her in my craft room, I can't do much crafting..